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Friday, May 29

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Ken Kraska is the guest editor today.

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photo courtesy of Terry Chen

Original article Armatix GmbH’s CEO Ernst Mauch is not creating a good many consumers want. He is creating a technology which he hopes people will be FORCED TO PURCHASE, and competitors COMPELLED to license from him, by convincing politicians and bureaucrats to mandate Armatrix’s technology be included in all new firearms. A John M. Browning or Sam Colt he isn’t. More like a rent-seeking shitheel.
Original article The U.S. Gov gives ex-presidents Secret Service protection for themselves and their wives for life, a $200k pension, and a $2 million a year “office budget” for ….? Hard to see why this is the case, given that every single living ex-Pres is a multi-millionaire in their own right already. The Obama’s aren’t, not yet anyway, but with ex-presidential speeches going for $250k apiece, he’ll be as flush as the others in no time at all.
Original article “[The] Ecocapsule, is a new kind of micro-house powered entirely by solar and wind energy. The capsule, made by a Slovakian company called Nice Architects, comes pre-made and ready to house two adults. Its kitchenette spouts running water, the toilet flushes, and the shower flows hot. It is 14.6 feet long and 7.4 feet wide.”
Original article “But the absence of any overt motivation creates a problem: it would be easy to understand why somebody religious would want to be ethical, no matter the hardships, looking forward to rewards in the afterlife.” And everyone else? An essay about ethical philosophy in post-apocalyptic pop culture media.
Original article “Here's another company that just doesn't get security research.” Indeed. It’s almost like they’d rather have their customers be hacked and/or ripped-off rather than suffer any embarrassment for their own security lapses. No good deed goes unpunished does it?
Original article “I was pretty proud of the way I had dealt with this problem until [the] Rangemaster … started his critique. ‘I liked the way you immediately alerted on the water bottle. But I wonder why you didn't just go back inside the house where you had excellent protective cover, extra guns, extra ammunition and a telephone?’ ... Sadly, we occasionally read about this sort of poor judgment in the news.”
Original article “A first-year sanitation worker [makes] more than $100,000 in total comp, including overtime, holiday pay, and benefits. When the Department of Sanitation announced last year that it would offer its employment exam for the first time in seven years, more than 90,000 people signed up to take it.” I’ll bet.
Original article For the reason that political pork, crony capitalism, and local VIP’s status-signaling combined  together seem to be an unstoppable force. And so it looks like SoCal taxpayers are next in line to get fleeced for another one.
Original article “[A] central bank or some sort of coinage monopoly can continually skim and redistribute throughout the financial system. Currency [then] ceases to be a highly accurate unit of account ... and becomes more a measure of how well connected and obedient you are to the system as a whole. Under such a system, price distortions become systemic.” And then you become Zimbabwe.
Original article And just when you think that the War on Drugs™ can’t get any more irrationally brainless…
Original article "The ticket handed out for jaywalking actually only carries with it a $25 base fine. It's when penalties and assessments are added in that the cost begins to skyrocket. So, where does the money go? Of that final $190 bail total, only $22.54 goes to the City of Los Angeles according to data provided by the Los Angeles Superior Court. $28.42 goes to the County of Los Angeles, while the State of California receives $139.04."
Pessimism
10
Jim Davies 2013-12-19 09:18
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR It's very sad, to see so much of it around STR. Several whose fingers fly over the keyboard to make comments seem to think that government is a fixture, here to stay. This is not limited to STR, mind; I enjoy much of the work of Fred Reed on another site, and noticed a fine recent example called Your Papers, Citizen which expertly compared the...
What It Feels Like to Be an Anarcholibertarian
9.75
Don Stacy 2013-12-16 09:17
Column by Don Stacy. Exclusive to STR One of my favorite libertarian articles is a January 2009 blog post by Professor John Hasnas entitled "What It Feels Like To Be a Libertarian." Hasnas is an Associate Professor of Business at Georgetown's McDonough School of Business, a visiting Associate Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center, and Director of the Georgetown...
Has Government Legalized Fraud?
0
Lawrence Samuels 2013-12-12 09:33
Column by L.K. Samuels. Exclusive to STR The federal government must have made fraud a legal practice. What else could one conclude in light of Obamacare? When President Obama, his administration and his Democratic cohorts promoted the Affordable Health Care Act, they advertised it with a slew of silver-tongued falsehoods, eloquent misstatements and outright lies. In other words, Obamacare was...
Lawmaking Lunacy
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Jim Davies 2013-12-12 09:19
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR I'd be very scared if confronted by someone armed, and evidently mad or malevolent. The first type might well do me harm, fatally maybe, because he or she wouldn't understand or be responsible for the actions about to be taken. A young child, perhaps, slashing a kitchen knife while playing some martial-arts fantasy he has dreamed up. Or an adult in...
Where's the Dignity?
0
Tim Hartnett 2013-12-10 08:58
Column by Tim Hartnett. Exclusive to STR “Where’s the contempt for the common man?” ~ Montgomery Burns As emotional trends go, hate has seen better days, in theory, anyway. The feeling is so far out of fashion they’ve made a crime out of it, which is a first for an emotion, I believe. Always make sure you are being objective before beating the be-Jesus out of anybody,...
The Mental Inertia of Statist Quo Bias
0
Jakub Bozydar W... 2013-12-09 10:00
Column by Jakub Bozydar Wisniewski. Exclusive to STR Possibly the most troubling aspect of any form of statism is not that individuals are treated instrumentally and their property rights are regularly violated, but that the vast majority of both the victims and the perpetrators of these happenings consider them as "normal" and "uncontroversial," as if propelled by some form...
Sauce for the Goose
0
Paul Hein 2013-12-09 09:44
Column by Paul Hein. Exclusive to STR A bunch of us old-timers get together around once a month for lunch. We’re too ancient to regale one another with stories about our children; that’s old hat. What we talk about mostly is politics, since, at our age, there’s so much politicking involving us ancients. At one of our meetings, someone pointed out that the Missouri Constitution...
Gold, Paper and Bits
7.5
Jim Davies 2013-12-06 09:22
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Carl Menger's great discovery was that all economic activity consists of everyone's individual, subjective choices. His successors in the Austrian school – Bawerk, von Mises, Rothbard, et al – have amplified that and refined it, but that's the fundamental truth. That is how prices are determined and why products are produced. The...
Iron Felix
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Jim Davies 2013-12-04 08:42
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR In 1991, while a Communist counter-coup was being repressed in Moscow, jubilant crowds pulled down a statue of Felix Dzerzhinsky which had stood in front of the KGB headquarters building, the Lubyanka. Despite his nickname, it had been made of bronze, lest a Hero of the Revolution turn rusty. Note that it was a spontaneous demolition by plain people, not...
Reality
6.66667
Jim Davies 2013-11-22 09:03
Column by Jim Davies. Exclusive to STR Better late, it's said, than never. So while I should have taken the opportunity years ago, this month I got around to it and listened to the famous interview of Ayn Rand by Mike Wallace, made for TV in black and white in 1959. You too can see it, on YouTube here (use Ixquick to find Parts 2 and 3.) It lasts 30 minutes, and it's a half hour very...
STR: A Glorious Decade of Radicalism
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Per Bylund 2011-08-11 00:00
Column by Per Bylund.  Exclusive to STR  For the five-year anniversary, I wrote a column about the value of a site like Strike The Root. I argued that the main problem to making anarchism an attractive social theory is its lack of guarantees. Rather than basing our worldview on the illusion of a stable and never-changing core to which we can fix and around which we can organize our...
On Striking the Root
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Michael Kleen 2011-08-11 00:00
Column by Michael Kleen. Exclusive to STR I am a relative newcomer to Strike The Root, so on this 10th anniversary of the website’s founding, all I have to offer is my own small perspective. I published my first column at STR, Spending Our Way to Ruin, in February 2009. At that time, STR already had quite a following. Chris Lempa, a longtime friend and Friday guest editor for the website,...
Inferno, Part I of II
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tzo 2011-08-12 00:00
Column by tzo.   Exclusive to STR Quoth Nietzche with regard to the State, “Yes, a hellish artifice has been created here, a death-horse jingling with the trappings of divine honors!”   The State is perhaps better understood in this industrial and technical era as a death-machine. The true ugliness within the guts of this meat grinder is hidden behind a well-crafted...
Inferno, Part II of II
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tzo 2011-08-15 00:00
Column by tzo.  Exclusive to STR Part II of II   Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita, (Midway upon the journey of our life,) Mi ritrovai per una selva oscura, (I found myself within a forest dark,) Che la diritta via era smarrita. (For the straightforward pathway had been lost.)   Without realizing it, the citizen has gotten off the path that he intended to take. He looks around...
The Doctrine of Love and Freedom
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Glen Allport 2011-08-16 00:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Almost unnoticed amongst the glitter and wonder of modern sci-tech is that the basic, foundational truths of classical liberalism are now exceptionally well supported by science. If you want a society that produces physically and emotionally healthy people and that fosters prosperity, innovation, and peace, you want – you need – both...
Voluntaryist Schooling at Libertopia 2011 - Part 1: The Summum Bonum Learning Center and Intrinsic Motivation
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2011-08-23 00:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow Exclusive to STR  In San Diego this October 20-23, visitors to Libertopia 2011 will have the very first glimpse of a new type of school – the Summum Bonum Learning Center. According to Joey Hill, director and co-founder of the school, “In the spirit of Libertopia, instead of waiting for liberty to happen at some time in the future, we decided to start...
The Doctrine of Love and Freedom: Condensed, One-Word Edition
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Glen Allport 2011-08-24 00:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   - 1 - The Word    **  Love. **   - 2 - Start of Commentary Section: The Word is Complete in Itself   Nothing more is needed, because love includes non-aggression: you don't aggress against others if you love them. The Doctrine of Love and Freedom is thus completely contained in the single word...
Voluntaryist Schooling at Libertopia 2011 - Part 2: Why Intrinsic Motivation Works
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2011-08-25 00:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow Exclusive to STR At Libertopia 2011, visitors will have a chance to find out why a group of voluntaryists in San Diego are starting their own school. More specifically, from October 20th through 23rd, the folks from Summum Bonum Learning Center will demonstrate how a school based on intrinsic motivation and freedom can respond to the needs of the children in ways...
Voluntaryist Schooling at Libertopia 2011 - Part 3: Why We Need Summum Bonum Learning Center – Now!
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Lawrence M. Ludlow 2011-08-30 00:00
Column by Lawrence M. Ludlow   Exclusive to STR   The Failure of Conventional Schools   Parents and children are frustrated by public schools (85% to 90% of all students). Not only do they do not meet their needs, but they treat parents and children as if they were sick patients instead of as valued customers. Moreover, student needs are superseded by politically sensitive funding...
A Sign of Our Depravity
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R. K. Blacksher 2011-09-02 00:00
Column by R.K. Blacksher   Exclusive to STR    Some people love to lament the popularity of violent video games and rap music. They view this as a sign of our depravity. Other people love to lament the popularity of NASCAR and professional wrestling. They view this as a sign of our stupidity.   Are they right? Does the popularity of these cultural phenomena emblemize the much...
Do We Need a Vaccine for Hubris? MUST READ
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D. Saul Weiner 2015-02-13 09:13
Column by D. Saul Weiner. Exclusive to STR There are a lot of heated exchanges going on right now in social media related to vaccination. Many people have become convinced that parents who do not vaccinate are jeopardizing the health of others and that vaccines for children should be mandated. Politicians who are expected to run for president in 2016 are starting to weigh in on the topic and some...
'Obamacare Nightmare Edition' of Ringo's Law and the Healthcare System of Doom MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2013-10-30 08:02
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR Introduction for this 2013 Edition As I write this – October 28, 2013, more than four years after the column below was posted (here with minor edits; see the original at this link if you wish) – NBC News is reporting that the Obama administration “knew millions could not keep their health insurance" under Obamacare, and has known...
An Armed March on Washington? MUST READ
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Alex R. Knight III 2013-05-07 06:52
Column by Alex R. Knight III. Exclusive to STR Perhaps never before have I encountered a proposal within Liberty Movement circles that has generated more controversy faster and further than Adam Kokesh’s planned July 4th march on Washington, District of Criminals, in which he states that himself and the other participants “will march with rifles loaded & slung across our backs to...
The Orwellian Paradigm--Killing You, For Your Own Safety MUST READ
9.625
fmoghul 2013-04-10 08:12
Column by Faisal Moghul. Exclusive to STR Almost 30 years ago, cultural critic Neil Postman argued in Amusing Ourselves to Death that television’s gradual replacement of the printing press has created a dumbed-down culture driven by mindless entertainment. In this context, Postman claimed that Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World correctly foresaw our dystopian future, as opposed to George...
Frameworks, Virtual Reality and Civil Society: A Manifesto for the Doctrine of Love and Freedom MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2012-12-06 08:44
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR Perhaps I should say this paradigm shift is resuming. The healthier incoming paradigm is a modern, more accurate, better-supported, and better-understood version of one that began the shift towards a free, healthy, and prosperous world more than three centuries ago and which informed the creation of the United States itself: Classical Liberalism. - 1...
Timeline of a World-Killing Paradigm Shift MUST READ
0
Glen Allport 2012-05-14 00:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Part 3 of "Could the Non-Aggression Principle Stop the Sixth Great Extinction?"   Part One of this series discussed the Non-Aggression principle, calling it "the libertarian half of the Golden Rule" (compassion being the other half) and describing the function of aggression in creating not only tyranny and war but also...
Terrorist Alert: Government Extremists Threaten Americans MUST READ
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Glen Allport 2012-03-26 00:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR   Question: are you more terrified by Muslim extremists, by "domestic terrorists" – or by your own government? Which group is more likely to assault you? To kill you? To unjustly imprison and even torture you?   The U.S. federal government has ALREADY:   Built and is staffing a huge gulag of concentration camps [...
The State Is a Firing Squad MUST READ
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JGVibes 2012-02-17 01:00
Column by JGVibes.   Exclusive to STR   Although the common perception of human nature is very negative, the truth is that most people who aren’t mentally ill have a very difficult time committing acts of violence. Usually it takes a sizeable payment and a fair amount of manipulation to convince someone to act violently, and even then a tremendous amount of guilt typically...
How the 1% Took America's Wealth--and How to Get It Back MUST READ
9.25
Glen Allport 2011-12-01 01:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR  - 1 - Plundering Wealth vs Producing Wealth   In recent decades, the rich have gathered an increasing share of the total wealth in the United States. As this wealth disparity grows and especially as large numbers of the formerly middle class fall into poverty and even into homelessness, this flow of wealth from main street (from anyone not...
'Anarchy or Minarchy' Is Only Half the Question, Part 2 MUST READ
9.5
Glen Allport 2011-04-13 03:00
Column by Glen Allport. Exclusive to STR  This is Part 2 of a response to a column by Wesley Messamore. Last week's Part One of this column discussed the following:   ·      Minarchy: Lighting a Match to the Fuse of Tyranny ·      Anarchy: By Itself, Yang without Yin ·      The Missing Key...